Project Management Training: Classroom vs mobile

By Alison Smith

As I look at the various ways in which learning can be delivered, there is definitely a move for bite size, instant answers to help negotiate a project problem or a learning gap via mobiles and tablets. The advice once located is then delivered directly to your device which may include a video clip to provide a solution to overcome the issue.

Another way of receiving advice at the time you require it is to take some kind of distance learning, either via the web or via a disc and book based programme. This too is convenient for the user and helps to bridge the knowledge gap.

I have one question for you about learning: although you will learn the specific knowledge you need, how much more are you missing out by not having the additional dimension of other colleagues input, their experience, practising and most importantly, receiving feedback?

It is true that traditional classroom based learning can be expensive in terms of staff time and finances, but it is equally true that during individual and group feedback sessions, the richness of personal experiences that can be readily applied to case studies cannot be gained by reading manuals, or even by completing an online course. There is also the fact that in this situation you can bring a real life project into the training room, and work through possible solutions with others in your organisation.

Project Agency recently ran a 2 day project management course where there was a vast range of experience with projects in the room, from no experience to very experienced. The course was to introduce everyone to new in house approach, and develop project management skills.

After 2 days of training it was time for the evaluation of the course we received the following comment “A very difficult subject to train, and attendees at different levels of knowledge – the trainer was excellent!” How much did all benefit from each other’s different input into the case study feedback? I would say there were invaluable lessons learned and experiences shared which they were able to take back to their work place and apply straight away.

I agree that on demand training has its place in the training arena, but are you being somewhat short changed by this quick fix approach? Let me know your thoughts.

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6 Responses to Project Management Training: Classroom vs mobile

  1. Pingback: Project Management Training: Classroom vs mobile | #PMChat

  2. Tony Adams says:

    Hi ron,
    A very thought provoking post, as usal! I have studied over many years – all by distance/mobile learning.. Masters degree, Diploma and now my PMP certification.
    i have appreciated the flexibility of mobile learning, BUT if I had my time over, I would join a classroom environment, hands down.

    I think we gain so much from interacting with others – we bring discussions to life, we share ideas, we test our own opinions, we challenge ourselves. THESE are learning outcomes that really add substance to the material and help us to absorb complex and multi-layered messages far easier.
    I can sit at home and memorise a text or complete a quiz. Woopee. But I will have a rich, engaging expereince that will stay with me for year after where I immerse myself in a live, dynamic classroom environment with all that that brings with it.

    Thanks for posting the discussion – a terrific topic.

    • Ron Rosenhead says:

      Tony thank you so much for saying what you have said….and far better than I can.

      Your emotion, thinking and learning come across to me really well. I am not ruling out other forms of learning by any means however its what will make the most difference to learning.

      It is a terrific topic and I welcome other people’s views

  3. Hi Ron,

    Classroom training and mobile training both have a place in developing a project manager’s career – if your own or your organisation’s budget allows then the experience of interacting face-to-face with others in a classroom setting will always be more valuable than learning alone. But many e-learning course have active forums and discussion groups so you don’t have to miss out on the interaction just because you are learning remotely – you just do it in a different way.

    • Ron Rosenhead says:

      Hi Michelle, thanks for this.

      I think you come out with some interesting words at the end of your comments: “you just do it in a different way.” I have no problem with what you say if it is set up in the correct way. Learning is a complex process and can be made easier by having an integrated approach. I rarely see this. I have spoken with people who have watched say a video on YouTube and that’s all the development they get.

      I agree that both training room and mobile learning have their place my concern is the integration and co-ordination of them to ensure real learning takes place.

      Thanks Michelle.

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